Leaves, Grass & Brush Collection

Collection crews work year-round with the same equipment. Trucks are outfitted according to the nature of the items being collected.

April 15 to October 15

Place brown yard waste bags (also called paper leaf bags and available at area stores) on your tree lawn by 7:30 a.m. the same day as your scheduled refuse collection. The City will collect a maximum of ten bags per pick-up. There is a 40-pound weight limit per bag.

During this season, two separate crews collect rubbish and yard waste bags. The EPA prohibits collection of yard waste with rubbish.

Bags should contain only the following:

  • Leaves
  • Grass clippings
  • Other organic leafy waste

Bags should never contain:

  • Gardening-related plastic
  • Other non-organic materials
  • Dog waste in plastic bags

Brush also does not belong in yard-waste bags. Brush (tree branches and cuttings from large shrubs) is recycled separately from yard-waste bags and should be placed directly on your tree lawn. See below for more information.

Effective 2018 the City will not collect yard waste bags contaminated with non-organic materials. Crews will place stickers reading "Unable to Pick Up" on contaminated bags. Residents may remove the contamination and place the bag out for delivery the following week.

View a video about what belongs in yard-waste bags (and what doesn't).

Note: At no time may leaves, grass, rubbish or brush be placed on center strips, park areas or in the street.

Instructions for Brush

The City collects brush from tree lawns every two weeks, except during Leaf Collection season (October 15 to December 15), when it is temporarily suspended. Landscapers should be advised to remove any brush collected during this time period.

  • Cut brush/tree trimmings into piles no larger than 4 feet long and 2 feet wide and weighing no more than 40 pounds.
  • Neatly stack brush piles parallel and close to the curb, away from trees, poles, signs and fire hydrants. No brush may be placed on City green spaces.
  • Tie bundles with twine if possible. This makes manual pick-up easier and reduces risk of property damage from collection equipment.
  • Only logs less than 6 inches wide and under 18 inches long are picked up. Larger logs are picked up for a fee.

October 15 to December 15: Leaf Collection Season

Collection teams will pass through the entire City as often as possible, about every two weeks, depending upon the volume of leaves on the ground, weather and equipment. Leaf collection is the top priority at this time of year. We hope to remove all leaves prior to snow plowing season.

  • During leaf collection season, the City no longer collects brush.
  • Leaf collection crews will collect lawn bags as they pass through the City, not on refuse collection days.

The City appreciates your efforts to follow these important guidelines:

  • Do not mix brush and/or tree branches in with leaves - the new "One-Man Leaf Vacuum Truck" cannot collect brush or branches.
  • Rake leaves to the tree lawn, away from trees, hydrants and street signs, and not into the street. Leaves raked into the street cause problems, including:
    • A tempting and dangerous place for children to play.
    • Entrance into the storm water sewer system, where they may cause blockage in the storm sewers and back-ups into homes in the neighborhood.
    • Older vehicles or those without catalytic converter shields risk igniting piles of dried leaves.
    • Leaf trucks cannot pull close to the curb. This prevents other vehicles from passing safely.
    • Snow plows push uncollected leaves throughout the neighborhood.
    • Cars parked in front of leaf piles prevent leaf trucks from picking up leaves.

December 15 to March 31

When crews are busy with snow removal, brush collection is maintained as weather permits only. 

Compost Piles

Compost piles require a compost permit (PDF). Email Public Works or call 216-491-1490 for more information.